Celebrated mix engineer Michael Brauer recently nabbed the coveted 2010 Best Engineered Album Grammy® Award for John Mayer’s Battle Studies — an album which employs a healthy dose of UA hardware. Battle Studies is the latest in a long line of accolades for Brauer, who has enjoyed an illustrious 30-year music career, mixing chart-topping albums from Coldplay, Aretha Franklin, Bob Dylan, and The Rolling Stones.
In the newly published interview on the Universal Audio website, Brauer recalls specific events in which UA’s hardware was used when he, Steve Jordan and John Mayer were searching for a particular sound: “There’s a tune on the album called, ‘Who Says?’ that I first tried mixing using my multi-buss compression technique. When John heard it…he thought that track needed to sound more honest…I went back and [used] one stereo compressor (a Neve 33609), going into a couple Pultec EQ’s, and [put] the vocals through my hardware UA LA-3A—which is just a great-sounding simple compressor. When John came back in a half hour later, he said, ‘That’s it.’ We were done.”
Long revered for the storied sonic approach he calls “BRAUERIZE,” Brauer holds court over an amperage-busting, NASA-like collection of vintage outboard gear at New York’s Electric Lady Studios. But even with access to some of the world’s most prized electronics, he delegates a large portion of his signal processing duties these days to Universal Audio's UAD-2 Powered Plug-Ins. “They have the sound I’m looking for,” he says. “And for me, it’s all about sound.”
Michael Brauer routinely incorporates Universal Audio’s Powered Plug-Ins to help him achieve his sound though he is known for having a massive collection of top-shelf analog hardware that includes UA’s classic 1176LN, LA-2A and LA-3A compressors, “I wasn’t too impressed with a lot of the plug-ins out there. I have a lot of the original pieces of hardware, so for me to use something, it has to be great. The UAD-2 stuff is incredible. Their Fairchild 670 sound is so good, a lot of times I use it where I normally might not. It makes vocals sound great.”
Read the interview in its entirety on Universal Audio’s website blog: http://www.uaudio.com/blog/michael-brauer-ua-interview
Learn more about the award-winning Universal Audio Hardware: http://www.uaudio.com/hardware.html
About Universal Audio Inc.
Founded in 1999 by Bill Putnam Jr. and based in Scotts Valley, California, Universal Audio is best known for its vintage analog reproductions and advanced Digital Signal Processing technology, including the award-winning UAD Powered Plug-Ins Platform. The company is focused on merging the best of classic analog and modern digital technology. UA is devoted to this endeavor, following its rich recording heritage and motto, “Analog Ears. Digital Minds.” www.uaudio.com
Photo: ©2011 Juan Patino Photography